Rhymes With Fuchsia

Friday, September 22, 2006


Do you remember the gift fleece, the one full of hay? Ruth, having come through like a trouper on Patriot's Day, was roped into volunteered to help out with another Colonial-era-related event and suggested that we could spin again (like we did last summer, er, spring). As it turned out, though, the organizers did want textile arts, but they wanted different ones, variety being the spice of life, so Ruth came up with having the kids make felt balls. "But I'm trying to figure out where we can get fleece," she said.

"Not to worry!" said I. "Remember all that fleece I acquired last winter? I'll just wash and card some of it for you."

"But plain white felt balls would be so boring," she said.

"Not to worry!" I reiterated. "I have lots of leftovers from Dye-O-Rama."

I figured I'd card and dye about a pound of fleece for her, little knowing that a pound turns out to seem like, oh, five or six metric tons if you're carding it by hand, picking VM out of it as you go. Nonetheless, I persevered with the process. Ruth requested bold, androgynous colors, so a nice bright green was first on the list. I mixed the dye, winging it, as I didn't know exactly what proportions would produce the green I had in mind, and poured in the boiling water. "A bit too yellow," I said, and added a little blue. A little more than necessary, as it turned out, as I got a spotty blue-green mixture — I had already noticed that mixed colors of this dye tend to separate somewhat, not such a big deal if you're handpainting, but I was looking for a uniform green. Shushing my inner perfectionist, I rinsed it out and hung it up to dry.

I really like this color mix; I'd like to card it again (yes, I really would) to blend the shades and then spin up a storm.

Maybe it'll rain and no one will show up.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Since Time Began

I promised you knitting, didn't I? Tell you what: go read about my alpaca adventure, which I shared with all these lovely bloggers (I saved the best photo for last). I will throw in my own $.02, but today I have a superseding event: Grant and I have been married a really, really long time. The astute among you will realize that this event was somewhat predictable, and you will keep quiet because in addition to being astute you are shy and refined. Moving right along...

Without further ado I present one word for each year of marriage to describe my beloved:





Yang to my yin

You might as well face it, dear: you're stuck with me and my yarn habit, because there is Zero probability of my letting you go now. Happy anniversary!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

The Magic Number

The question was, of course, why didn't she put a nickel in the sandwich? Although I must say I liked all of them, especially how he got to Scollay Square and how his wife knew exactly when and where to meet his train. (Perhaps she was having an affair with the conductor and it was all a plot to keep Charlie otherwise occupied?)

And the winner is...


Send me an email, and we'll talk yarn.

An honorable mention is due to the delurking Ruth (not Ruth, Ruth), commenter #17, who broke my previous record and without whom I might have become the Blogger Who Never Returned. Shout it out with me:

1, 2, 3, 4,
I'm a little comment wh*re,
5, 6, 7, 8,
I love comments, they are great!

It's only fitting that a new commenter won. Now, of course, I have a bunch more great blogs to read, because I wasn't wasting enough time at work already.

Btw, Ruth, O'Brien lost, possibly spelling the beginning of the end for campaign songs. Too bad, really, because we could come up with some good ones for the upcoming elections.

(to the tune of "Oh, Susannah")

Oh, I always vote Republican, I'm Bush's biggest fan,
Since Iraq has gone so well I say let's take it to Iran.
Wimpy liberals, how could you be so wrong?
While you whine for civil liberties, those wiretaps keep us strong.

Yes, I am a Massachusetts liberal, and a snide one at that. Deal with it. The next post will contain less politics and more knitting, I promise.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

She Has Returned

She returned on Wednesday, in fact: I too have returned, to blogging sloth in my case. But she is back, a seasoned traveler, complete with hand-me-downs and the fruits of a back-to-school shopping spree with her aunt and cousins.

As I took my place in the checkpoint line at the airport, I prayed that no one would confiscate my knitting needles: as previously advertised, I'm working on the Trekking sock — yes, there is still only one, so sue me — on size-0 Addis using the magic-loop method, the Addis being the most tolerable circs I could find in that size, although still a bit blunt for my taste. Long, pointy metal things, I thought: uh oh. (Yes, the TSA web site does say knitting needles are permitted; it also says screeners can confiscate pretty much anything they want if they think it might be dangerous. To be fair, I've heard of no abuses of this policy along the lines of, "Better hand over that diamond ring, ma'am, someone could get hurt.") I was passed without comment, needles and all, although when they pulled the guy behind me out for extra screening, I did wonder if they'd confused my bag with his.

I proceeded to the gate, where I took up a position as close to the jetway door as possible. Knitting furiously kept my panic down to a manageable level for the next half hour, so that I refrained from grabbing airline employees by the throat and screaming, "What have you done with my daughter???" as more people than the plane could possibly hold came off with no Miss B in sight. Finally she appeared, accompanied by a flight attendant and quite unfazed, and I put my knitting away and tried to pass for normal as I showed my ID to reclaim her. I must have succeeded, as no one tried to take either of us into protective custody.

Miss B's aunt had given her an extra bag in which to pack the additional stuff she had acquired, so we expected to find two bags at baggage claim. I thought about what a fun subway ride home we would have, dragging our bags behind us, but I needn't have worried: only one bag appeared. Eventually we found the guy handing out lost-baggage claim forms, beset by half a dozen people from two flights who were missing bags. I started to mutter silently about penny-pinching, corner-cutting airlines, but it was probably not their fault. When Miss B's bag was delivered to our house the next day it contained a calling card from the TSA: we have protected you by searching your bag and making it miss your flight. Their curiosity was probably aroused by the x-ray of all of her various toiletries (why, yes, my daughter really does travel with five kinds of hair gel). The lost-baggage guy was very good-natured about all of this, asking if the bag had a name tag (yes), and if the tag was missing, what was in the bag, so they could identify it. "Five pairs of shoes," she said. I wanted to explain that I really didn't equip my daughter with that many shoes and tell him about her four girl cousins and their hand-me-downs, but I kept quiet, except maybe for addressing her as "Imelda."

On the return subway ride we used the new "Charlie tickets" (Boston's having been until very recently the last major transit system in the world still using tokens), and Miss B got the benefit of my rendition of Charlie on the MTA. If you are not from the Boston area, or possibly even if you are, and you are unfamiliar with this song, go read the lyrics and then come back and tell me what question immediately popped into your head. In an effort to rival Ruth for World's Easiest Sock-Yarn Contest, I'll put everyone who comes up with the standard question into a drawing for some sock yarn. (I don't want to hear any ridiculous excuses about already having enough. C'mon, you know you want it.)